Bard envisions the liberal arts institution as the hub of a network, rather than a single, self-contained campus. Numerous institutes for special study are available on and off campus, connecting Bard students to the greater community.
The Center for Civic Engagement at Bard College embodies the fundamental belief that education and civil society are inextricably linked. In an age of information overload, it is more important than ever that citizens be educated and trained to think critically and be actively engaged with issues affecting public life.
Elizabeth M. Holt (director), Katherine M. Boivin, Omar Cheta, Yuval Elmelech, Tabetha Ewing, James P. Ketterer, Joel Perlmann, Dina Ramadan, Shai Secunda, Sophia Stamatopoulou-Robbins, Karen Sullivan, Tehseen Thaver
Middle Eastern Studies (MES) promotes the intellectual exploration and analytic study of the historical and contemporary Middle East, from North Africa to Central Asia. MES provides an interdisciplinary framework with course offerings cross-listed with history, literature, Arabic, Hebrew, religion, human rights, sociology, anthropology, gender studies, political studies, art history, and environmental and urban studies.
Students in MES must meet the following requirements before Moderation: enroll in an MES core course and obtain one year of language proficiency in Arabic or Hebrew. At Moderation, students must submit papers on past experience and projected work, as well as an academic paper about the Middle East written in one of their core or elective MES classes. Students also indicate whether they wish to moderate into the Social Studies or Language and Literature Division.At least one member of the Moderation board should be a faculty member affiliated with MES.
After Moderation, students must enroll in the MES junior theory seminar, and three other electives (200 level and above) to broaden their understanding of the region, one of which should be a 300-level seminar that requires a substantial paper on some topic pertaining to the Middle East. MES students moderating into Languages and Literature are also required to complete a second year of Arabic or Hebrew. At least one elective should be taken outside the student’s primary division. Students must also successfully complete a Senior Project that addresses aspects of the contemporary Middle East and incorporates topics that students have studied during their MES course work. The Senior Project board should include at least one faculty member affiliated with MES.
Core courses include: Religion 106, Islam; Literature 2060, Modern Arabic Fiction; Literature 2185, The Politics and Practice of Cultural Production in the Middle East and North Africa; and History 185, The Making of the Modern Middle East. MES electives include: Arabic 101–102, Beginning Arabic; Arabic 201–202, Intermediate Arabic; Arabic 301–302, Advanced Arabic; Hebrew 101-102, Elementary Hebrew; Literature 2062, Old Arabic Books; and Anthropology 277, In the Garden of Empire: Nature and Power in the Modern Middle East.